Can I Get My Own Permission?

featured photo from feelling's tumblr

Saying No

At the end of the day, you come home and you’ve fought your battle.

You were on the front line, tackling all those to-do’s, fulfilling obligations, and you’re worn out.

Feeling tired, the word “self-care” comes up in your head and you are reminded oh yeah, I need to meet my own needs.

And suddenly you feel a sense of guilt, thinking about some meeting or event you were going to attend. Your instinct tells you to say no.


But, what if they say…? What if there are dire consequences if I don’t go? What if I’m missing out on something important and I regret for the rest of my life?!

Somehow you get through the mind-shit and say no, or perhaps you make an excuse. “I don’t think I can do it.”

And then the other person doesn’t take no for an answer. And you have to go, you have to do this.


What do you do?

You barrage yourself with — Why did I…? It doesn’t work out magically like I’d think. Who do I think I am? Stupid! I can’t take care of me. I have to be the last. I don’t deserve. I’m not worthy.

All the criticism. All the self-hating talk.

All just because you need time for yourself.


The thing is, all you really need is just permission.

Not permission from someone else – like that person who said no to you. Forget that person.

But YOU. You need permission from yourself.


Yes, you can give yourself permission to be selfish.

Yes, you can give yourself permission to feel disappointed about stuff that you think you should suck it up.

Yes, you can give yourself permission to feel sad that it’s so hard to protect yourself.

Yes, you can permit yourself to feel the pain of all of it.


At the end of the day, all you need is permission.

Permission to make mistakes. To stumble. To be broken. To be lacking.


Who is the permission-granter?

I feel like we’re all just elementary school kids. We’re just physically bigger…but have the mindset of a 6 year old.

Really. Remember the days when we had to raise our hands and politely ask, “May I go to the bathroom, please?” No, not “Can I go to the bathroom” but “May I.” (I remember I got this from this annoying teacher who was very literal).

See the difference between “may” and “can.” We say “may I…?” because we’re asking permission; we’re not asking if we’re able (“can I…?”) because obviously, we are able to.

Let that sink in. It means that we have the ability. But we’re stopping ourselves because we’re trying to get permission.


When we were little, we had to ask permission to do ANYTHING. To pee, to run, to eat, to play, to learn.

It was as if we did not have the autonomy to do these things on our own. It was as if this thing called a will of our own did not exist in this universe.

Someone else – an adult – told us what to do and who to be. We were kind of like marionette dolls. Doing what we’re told. Having the voice only when given a permission from “authority.”


So saying “no”to something and making time for yourself means that you have found the voice within you that have been buried deep for many years (more like, your whole life).

It means that you recognize that you CAN do anything you want. You don’t need permission from someone else.

I could only imagine what the world would be like if everyone recognize this ability within oneself. Everyone will be empowered.


No more asking for permission.


You already had one from the moment you were born. Look inside.

– Y Jung


Daily Mood Art Journaling + free printable guide

Are you the type to journal?

If so, that’s good! But do you also make art?.. Because there are lots of good things about making art in a daily journal.

Here are some benefits that I thought of:

  1. Self-care routine
    – An art journal can help you wind down and take time for yourself in a nurturing and supportive way.It helps you have peace of mind and have time to focus on yourself. We’re so busy meeting demands of other people, of workplaces, of different situations and the last person we focus on is ourselves!
  2. Release emotions
    – Just like taking a shower to rinse off the gunk you accumulated during the day, it’s important to do the same for your inner self.Art journal can help you release the feelings that you’ve been holding onto and let them go onto your journal book or sketchbook so you don’t have to carry them anymore.
  3. Mood lifting
    – Making something with your hands is fun. You get to play with lines, colors, and the art materials itself. It’s a drastic switch from your busy, stressful, and overwhelming day.It also takes your mind of of your mind (get it?) and lets you drop into your physical body. This helps with relaxing and releasing the grip on the mental loops you go through in the head when you’re stressed.
  4. Let your creative juices flow
    – Engaging with your creative side through journaling can help you keep the creative juices flowing and prevent creative blocks.
  5. Record of your days
    – Art journal can be a record of how your day went, just like a diary. The beauty of it is that you may express something and later on see it in a different light or find some new insight into your day as you look back on what you created.

To start making art in your daily journal, you might need some materials first. You can check out this post to see what you can get.

Now, if you have all the materials, you’re almost ready.

Getting ready:

First, have a mindset that this is important. Because it is! Whenever I go days or weeks without self-care or creative time, I notice that I have junk in my system. Like emotional debris that I haven’t shaken off. And it really affects me.

Think of this creative journaling a must for your sanity. Sometimes it’s the only time when you can be honest with yourself.

It could be the only time to express your feelings 100%.

It could change your day tomorrow.

So if you really want to do this, put an alarm in your phone – about 1 hour before your bedtime.

When that alarm goes off, get your materials and sit down with this guide. You’re ready now.

I’ve written out the guide here, but I also have a printable PDF worksheet of it that you can print out, follow along, and even make your art in it, without using a separate journal/book (as long as you don’t use paint, which will bleed through your regular printer paper).

If you want to print out the worksheet, it’s in my digital library. You can put in your email below and you’ll have access to the library and use the PDF right away!

Daily mood art journal pdf

Get access to my resource library


If you want to just following along from this post, just continue to read –

Here’s the guide:

Settle into your seat and take a couple of deep breaths in and out.

Remind yourself of what your intention of being here is.

Check in with yourself and ask yourself how your day was. Identify what feelings were dominant today. If you can’t think of this first, then just remember what happened today that affected you. How did this thing affect you? How did it make you feel? (write it down)

See if you can locate where in your body you have this feeling. Stomach? Head? Throat, legs, shoulders…? Imagine it had a weight, a shape, form, or color.

Can you see it in your body? Now let’s put that down onto paper as an image.

If it is an object that you imagined, you can draw that out. If it is just a color, draw that out too. Put any details that you saw as you imagined this feeling inside your body.

Give yourself about 10 minutes to do this in your art journal but you can take however long it takes until you feel it is complete.

When you’re complete, look at your drawing and think of a title. Pick the one that feels right. (write it down)

If there is anything that comes up in your mind as you look at the drawing, write it down on the page or on another page.

Check in with yourself again and see how you feel.

Thank yourself for making time for yourself!